The McCreary County Record

Local News

September 12, 2007

Yahoo Falls monument to be removed

YAHOO FALLS — McCreary County is about to have one less historical marker.

Officials with the Daniel Boone National Forest announced last week their intention to remove the black granite monument erected under mysterious circumstances last year at the entrance to Yahoo Falls.

The monument commemorates the 1810 Massacre at Yahoo Falls. There are just two problems.

One, it is illegal to erect any monument on U.S. Forest Service land without permission.

Two, DBNF officials question whether the event actually took place.

Forest Archeologist Chris Jenkins said Friday that officials had contacted several suspects so that the monument could be removed privately to no avail.

“No one has taken responsibility,” Jenkins said.

A Google search found the monument featured on a rootsweb.com page, which indicated the monument was dedicated on August 12, 2006, “with an Inter-tribal Ceremony.”

Today Yahoo Falls, located off KY 700, is known as Kentucky’s highest waterfall but the site has long held fascination for historians and genealogists interested in the Jake Troxell/Princess Cornblossom saga.

The same website features a history from Dr. Kenneth Barnett Tankersley of Northern Kentucky University. According to this account, a band of Indian fighters led by Hiram Gregory led the attack in an attempt to wipe out the Cherokee from the Cumberland River valley once and for all.

“Little Jake” Troxel(l), son of Revolutionary War veteran Jacob Troxel and “Doublehead’s daughter” (commonly Princess Cornblossom), arrived with his mother to find more than 100 Cherokee dead or dying. The pair cut off the attackers’ escape route and killed two of the remaining white men while a third escaped.

Chief Doublehead’s daughter died a few days later purportedly from injuries sustained in the gun fight while her is said to have died from grief.

While the monument to the massacre lists the date as August 10, 1810, Tankersley claims it could have occurred as late as October. The monument was erected by an older grave marker for Jacob Troxel which lists his date of death as October 10, 1810. A historical marker for Princess Cornblossom stands at the top of Brick Hill in Stearns.

Reports conflict as to where either is actually buried.

Jenkins told The Record that the owner(s) has 15 days (until September 26) to remove the black granite monument. If no one comes forward, the monument will be impounded for an additional 90 days. The owner may still retrieve the monument but will be charged the expenses incurred by the Forest Service to remove and store it.

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